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2022 European Club Championships - the players' view



After weeks and months of intense preparation, the Scambio finally set off for Spain on Friday 25th November to participate in the 2022 European Championships.


This was to be brave new world for a collection of players who had never competed at such a high level.

Spirits were high, naturally, even if few amongst the travelling party knew quite what to expect as we touched down in Elce on the Costa Blanca.


Certainly, a top-eight finish seemed out of reach. This was elite level competition, after all, and we were the newest of all comers.


For some, indeed, the fear of embarrassment weighed heavy on hearts and minds.


Would they manage to win a single match? Would they even score a try?


In the end, they scored 43, winning 3 games out of 7 over a gruelling 2-day schedule to claim 11th place overall.


A tremendous achievement for a group still relatively new to this sport compared to their more illustrious counterparts from around the continent.


Here are the recollections of the 16 players that represented the Scambio di Lingue at 2022 European Championships for Clubs.


Day 1, Game 1

Scambio di Lingue 4 - 9 Six Pack Touch


From the outset, an early-morning start against the champions of Scotland was identified as a less-than-ideal way for us to open our campaign.


When you are notorious for being slow starters, you hope and pray for a kind draw that will throw up an easy opener to help ease players into their collective stride.


Six-Pack were about as far away from that as anyone dared to contemplate.


The Glaswegian heavyweights were ear-marked as title-contenders, and they hit the ground running, cruising 3-0 at half time.


At times, it looked as though the floodgates might open, but to our credit we found away to stay in the game, and even scored 4 tries of our own in a dogged second-half performance.


Ian Taylor, Rana and Tiago were all amongst the scorers, as was Micha, who claimed a bit of history of her own by becoming the first Scambio player to score at the Euros.


Micha: “Ero contenta di segnare la prima metà per la squadra al torneo, sempre tenendo conto del merito di tutti quanti.”
Rana: “A livello personale, mi ritengo orgoglioso del passaggio a Mica contro i six pack, che ha sancito così la prima meta dello scambio ai campionati di Elce 2022.

For the Glaswegian in our own ranks, it proved a poignant challenge amongst his former adversaries.


Ian Taylor: The most difficult match was definitely the first against Six Pack. Having previously played against them a few times back in Scotland and seeing having seen basically all of their players play regularly for the national teams I knew it would be a tough match up, especially for our first ever game in a European championship. Although we got a few scores in and in some parts of the game we showed a very strong defence, in the end it felt like a massive step up in quality. The speed, the angles they ran, the athleticism to step us two or three times in the same passage was pretty eye opening and at some point I felt that we were pretty lost with no way to deal with it. This clearly showed by the fact we already in the first game started to argue amongst each other and throw blame about. As much as this first game was certainly a physical challenge, I think it was equally mentally challenging for some.

Team mates Shadi and Chiara K, meanwhile, were more sanguine about the defeat.

Shadi: “La partita contro i Six Pack ha rotto il ghiaccio ed era contro una squadra di alto livello, un livello a cui non avevamo mai giocato prima, e la soddisfazione di riuscire comunque a segnare e metter in campo il nostro gioco ci ha dato sicurezza in noi stessi come squadra e come singoli giocatori, o almeno cosi' è stato per me. Ci ha anche dato l'opportunità di imparare e vivere in prima persona una partita contro una squadra di altissimo livello, rendendoci cosi' conto di quanta strada c'è ancora da fare.
Konish: “Despite fear and frustration, I discovered that we were perfectly able to compete in EFT and give a good fight. We could react to their attacks and put up a decent defence. We even scored some tries! It wasn't the best match in terms of performance, but it was the most exciting one.

Day 1, Game 2

Touch Tigers Guernsey 4 - 6 Scambio di Lingue


Having had a taste of what it means to play against British opposition, the second game of the day couldn’t come quickly enough for our players.


And when it did, we pulled out what for some was the best performance of the weekend, scoring six tries against a much more experienced Guernsey outfit to claim our first victory of the day.


Again, the tries were well distributed. Ian Taylor and Tiago were once more on the mark, with further efforts from Shadi, Charlie and Dijana, who all had fond memories of the game.


Dijana: I think in general the game against Guernsey was our best game where we really managed to put all our previous training on display and showed most fluidity in game style. Individually I was happy to score on my first ever game in the tournament. That gave me a boost of confidence that we actually have what it takes and that we are a completely legitimate competitive team.
Shadi: Well scoring a try feels always quite good, and the one against touch tigers guernsey had its own special taste. But another great moment for me was a switch in position during mid game. I just heard Charlie saying "you are moving from right link to left link, you know what to expect", and in fact I did. Well actually we didn't score out of what we had planned but with Rana's individual stepping/running line, but the feeling of having such a quick and clear pitch understanding with a teammate is unique and you know it's the result of hard trainings and hours spent in revising games, mistakes and situations.
Charlie: The second half of most matches was generally a highlight given the constant fighting attitude shown by all members of the team. Even experienced and dangerous teams began to doubt themselves as we mounted comeback after comeback. We also learned how to WIN matches. Even if we should have closed them out earlier, we managed to finsh with the win, building confidence and credibility. Personally, my highlights were getting assists off quickies or scoops which resulted in tries for others who don't often score.

Ian T, by now, was also more encouraged about what he was seeing:

Taylor: We had just experienced a tough defeat against six pack in a game rife with arguments and high tempers. To then go onto the next game and win (quite comfortably) with none of the nonsense from the previous game was a pretty good feeling. That paired with the fact that I also scored a good number of tries!

Day 1, Game 3

Nottingham Hoods 6 - 4 Scambio di Lingue


And so to game #3, again against British opposition, though on this occasion opponents of an entirely different calibre.


The Hoods would go on to finish overall runners-up on the Sunday, losing only a single game, that against eventual winners Galaxy in the final.


A tough task then for the Scambio, but a challenge that was not shirked.


Tries by Rana, Tiago, Giulio and Ila kept the result in the balance until the final moments, and though a win proved a step too far, spirits rightly remained high in the aftermath of a quality performance.


Rana: A me è piaciuta la partita contro Nottingham e six pack, ma contro Nottingham in special modo. È stata obiettivamente la squadra più forte contro cui abbiamo gareggiato, in assoluto. Ma, nonostante questo, abbiamo mantenuto una solida compostezza e rigore nelle nostre giocate e strategie sviluppate nell'arco dei mesi precedenti, senza mai perdere né calma, né entusiasmo. La supremazia inglese era evidente a tutti, ma dalla dignità non si prescinde.
Taylor: Putting 4 tries against the finalists Nottingham and narrowly losing to what was seen to be one of the most formidable teams in the tournament was a team highlight. This was made even sweeter by hearing two of their mids ask each other ‘’how the f**k are they scoring against us’’ after a superb diving score by Rana!
Ila: Tra quelle che ho giocato... quella contro il Nottingham (era la mia partita preferita). Posso vantarmi di aver fatto meta ai vice campioni europei eheh e penso che perdere 6-4 non sia stato così male contro di loro. Penso anche che come squadra non siamo stati troppo nervosi in campo, come di solito siamo quando stiamo perdendo.
Shadi: I think losing 4-6 to Notthingam was quite an achievement, however I am pretty sure they were playing in 3rd gear.
Clara: La partita contro Nottingham era la mia preferita perché anche se erano molto forti e sempre al limite con i falli siamo riusciti a tenergli testa, mettendoci il massimo e non demoralizzandoci. Un highlight personale per me era quando andando al box dopo una meta Ian mi ha detto "questo l'hai creato tu! È grazie a te se abbiamo fatto meta"

Day 1, Game 4

Scambio di Lingue 6 - 7 Steibock’s


And so onto the last game of the day, and a first ever encounter against a team from Switzerland.


Having played so astutely against a triumvirate of British opposition, this game was earmarked as another that we could potentially win, but despite tries for Rana (2), Tiago (3) and Giulio, it was not to be.


An error-strewn, bad-tempered encounter, this one very much left a bad taste in everyone’s mouth.


Tiago: We did not find solutions to tackle our weakness or to compensate our mistakes, no alternatives to tamper their moves. And despite the defensive struggle, we kept fighting hard and our attack did manage to narrow the gap in the score, which was at the moment emotionally hard to digest as we kept on disappointing defensively
Micha: Eravamo convinti di poterla vincere facilmente ma in realtà poi non era a fatto il caso. Forse perché eravamo stanchi dopo tutta una giornata o forse per il fatto che sapevamo di essere ripresi live su YouTube...
Konish: This was the hardest match. It was physically tiring and the pressure we had for winning the game made us make a lot of silly mistakes (lost balls, off-sides). The more we felt we had to perform the less our heads were thinking clearly.
Dijana: we just weren’t able to find our rhythm, made loads of mistakes and showed no fluidity in play. Games at this level are played more with the head. The importance of being able to stay calm and composed gives you a better outcome any day, panic and nervousness leads to a toxic environment and poor general performance
Shadi: La pausa di 3 ore prima di giocare in campo ha portato a menti poco lucide, stanche e poco reattive. In più era la prima partita che giocavamo con delle vere aspettative, volevamo vincere e sapevamo (su carta) che poteva essere possibile. Tra ansia da prestazione, mente offuscata e corpo intorpidito la partita è stata piuttosto scoordinata. Difesa disorganizzata e attacco inesistente (mete per lo più individuali). Nel secondo tempo lo spirito agguerrito dello scambio si è fatto valere, e ci siamo aggrappati a tutto e ci abbiamo davvero provato fino all'ultimo, ma troppo tardi e questo lascia un po' l'amaro in bocca (soprattutto considerato che Steibock’s si è poi classificata diverse posizioni sotto di noi).
Konish (again). It was also the most difficult match to play wing. As a winger your main job is to coordinate the defence and talk to your teammates. But when your opponents keep scooping on your links you really have to run fast - and take the right man. If you are a winger with some poor athletic training it's easy to lose count of the touches on the freccia's directed at you and becoming breathless. Same goes with your vision if the scoop is right in front of you... You call shutdown, and you're done. The Swiss scoops were creating confusion in our defensive lines and bringing down the morale. It was difficult to keep concentration after many balls lost under the pressure, which led to more and more defenses. Moreover, our piston defense was quite not working and there, on the far side wing, where you have a full panoramic view of what's happening, it was disheartening to try and shout "cancel" while watching our strategy failing. One highlight was an incredible joint effort between Carlo and Tiago to keep the Helvetian away from out try line: their speed and coordination, the perfect movements going back to the line, the right touches, gave me the courage to carry on and not give up.
As a winger, it was difficult also to attack with these guys: their shutdown defence was impenetrable, and no pass would come our way. Only scoops (how ironic!) were working and my job was just to keep my wing busy by running like there was no tomorrow. But alas, tomorrow came, and all my muscles didn't thank me for that!
Ila: Zero comunicazione di squadra e frustrazione alle stelle.

Day 2, Game 1

Utrecht Touch 7 - 8 Scambio di Lingue


And so onto the second day of action with plenty still to play for.


First up, a ding-dong affair against a lively Utrecht side in a game were attack was king and defence largely optional.


7-7 after normal time, a drop-off would decide the outcome, and thankfully we came up with the goods.


Rana (2), Charlie (2), Giulio (2) and Micha were all among the tries, as was Chiara S for the first time in the tournament.


Suri: è stata una buona performance a livello collettivo. Per quanto riguarda me, sono contenta di aver aver avuto il giusto timing (grazie a Charlie) e una buona presa per segnare. Ero contenta dei piccoli progressi che sto facendo nella comunicazione.
Charlie: early morning starts are always a challenge and, generally, we don't get off to a good start. However, we combined well in that first match of the day and scored in a variety of ways and won a drop-off situation, which is always tough.
Carlo: The game against Ultrecht Touch was terrific. Hard fought, try after try, what I look for when I browse touch games on YouTube. On top of that, we won in the drop-off. Overall it was pleasing to watch and experience.

For poor Federico, sick all week with the flu and not well enough to play on the Saturday, it was a baptism of fire, though one which he’ll not forget.


Fede: Posso dire che la partita più bella tra quelle in cui ho giocato è stata la prima partita di domenica contro l'Utrecht. Personalmente è stato il primo scontro del torneo in cui ho messo piede in campo. Fino al giorno prima non sapevo se avrei giocato, se ce l'avrei fatta o come avrei reagito nel cercare di dare il 100% nel mio stato influenzale. é stato un turbine di emozioni che ha quasi rispecchiato il verdetto finale: vinta per una meta di differenza ai dropoff.
Una partita così ha in parte tolto il malumore che si era inserito dopo l'ultima partita della prima giornata in cui purtroppo non sono funzionate diverse cose e che aveva conseguentemente portato a una sconfitta bruciante.

For Ilaria, meanwhile, the experience wasn’t an easy one, watching on from the sidelines:


Ilaria: La partita Scambio-Utrecht era il mio turno in panchina, ma credo sia stata la partita in cui ho sudato di più. In 40' di battaglia all'ultimo sangue penso di aver perso le corde vocali e 10 anni di vita tifando la mia squadra in campo. Un duello ad armi (quasi) pari, fino all'ultimo secondo quando, manco nei college movies americani, un secondo prima del fischio di fine tempo ci hanno segnato la meta che ci ha portati al pareggio! Si va ai Drop-off, silenzio concentrazione e infine la vittoria!! il tifo sfegatato, gli incitamenti e i balletti a bordo campo non sono passati inosservati agli occhi dell'arbitro, che in segreto ci ha incitato a continuare così e ci ha confessato che, solo per tutta la passione e l'entusiasmo che ci stavamo mettendo, anche lei in fondo sperava che vincessimo noi (lol)

Day 2, Game 3

Scambio di Lingue 6 - 12 BUC Touch


And so the penultimate match, a 40-minute encounter against a youthful Belgian team against whom the Scambio promised much but delivered little.


Charlie capped an incredible individual performance with 5 tries, adding to another by Rana.


But outside of that, there was little else to celebrate as the team suffered a meltdown the like of which is hard to recall.


If Steibok's was a bitter pill to swallow, this one was even harder to digest.


Carlo: No one wants to travel this far to play these kind of games. The ball didn't really want to stick to our hands and our attacking plays failed most of the times. We quickly lost focus and patience. For some it was blatant, others didn't show it, but there was a general feeling of great discomfort throughout the match. I ended up taking a pretty bad hit, face first on the ground which left me leaving the pitch a the start of the second half short of breath.
Clara: E tutti molto frustrati e non siamo riusciti ad esprimere il massimo delle nostre capacità
Suri: C'era molto nervosismo in campo e un po' di aggressività, il che ha messo in difficoltà anche gli arbitri.
Chiara C: Tanto, troppo, nervosismo in campo che non ci ha permesso di fare il nostro gioco a mente lucida. Difficile, si, la squadra avversaria era forte. Ma in quel momento l'avversario peggiore eravamo noi stessi e il nostro comportamento. Una partita che non siamo riusciti a vincere.
Shadi: Contro Buc gelo e imbarazzo. Ci siamo lasciati prendere dalla frustrazione, ancora non mi spiego esattamente dovuta a cosa. Stavamo giocando bene e a parte qualche errore di handling stavamo ingranando una buona marcia, ma l'atmosfera in campo era carica di tensione. E la pausa tra il primo e secondo tempo non ha aiutato.. è stata una carneficina a livello emotivo, imbarazzante a dir poco. Cambi forzati (molteplici), continui appunti all'arbitro, sbuffi, urla (anche tra compagni) ed il tutto in una partica contro dei giovanissimi (molti adolescenti che potrebbero anche essere scusati per comportamenti eccentrici). Non abbiamo avuto la meglio sulla pressione che giocare a questo livello comporta. Non siamo stati di supporto nè a noi stessi nè ai nostri compagni e compagne. Una parentesi su cui riflettere e assicurarsi non si ripeta più.
Filippo: la squadra non ci stava più con la testa. Ci siamo complicati la vita da soli.
Rana: Contro buc, non tanto per la qualità tecnica degli avversari, quanto per il nostro comportamento in campo, del tutto fuori luogo e autolesionistico, comodo quanto evitabile regalo per la squadra avversaria, che gli ha consegnato la vittoria tra le mani. Mentre noi sbraitavamo e ci lamentavamo con gli arbitri, loro sorridevano del nostro comportamento pietoso. Vergogna totale.

Day 2, Game 3

Den Haag 9 - 11 Scambio di Lingue


And so the final match of this great adventure, an 11th/12th place playoff against Den Haag.


Still licking their wounds after the previous encounter against BUC, nobody among Scambio ranks was taking anything for granted.


Touch is riding high in the low countries, and a top performance would be needed to overcome another dangerous attacking team.


Thankfully, a top performance was what transpired.


Tiago, Micha, Ila, Giulio and Filippo were all on the scoresheet in addition to a brace by Chiara S and a 4-try haul by Rana.


Cue scenes of exhaustion and quiet satisfaction after a job well done.


Fede: personalmente, tra le partite che ho giocato (giornata di domenica) ho trovato l'ultima partita la più difficile. Al di là della vittoria finale e dell'11° posto conquistato, ho davvero sofferto per la mia condizione fisica dovuta allo stato di malattia. Sono caduto per terra almeno un paio di volte perché ho sentito mancarmi le forze e girare la testa per la stanchezza, oltre al poco fiato rotto dalla tosse. Ho temuto davvero di non farcela. Era l'ultima partita e tutta la squadra ci teneva a chiudere il torneo quanto meglio. Ma la gioia finale per la vittoria ha reso più dolce il tutto.
Micha: Era la partita più bella perché eravamo più rilassato come squadra e siamo riusciti meglio di applicare il nostro gioco.
Suri: Bella partita, siamo entrati come una squadra, l'obiettivo era quello di concludere con soddisfazione. c'era un bel clima in campo, anche da parte degli avversari e non un'eccessiva pressione.
Taylor: The best part of this game though was the mood of the team. I know we were all absolutely destroyed physically, and even doing the warmup pre-match, a few of us were even struggling to keep a light jog up. The fact that we were able to run out on the field and perform with the intensity that we did and more importantly the positivity and support from the box that was maybe missing in the previous games, for me made that victory a little more sweet!

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POST-TOURNAMENT

Reflections


By Monday evening, the touring party had returned to Padova (and elsewhere), back to confront reality after a slightly surreal experience under the Spanish sunshine.


In a nutshell, the 2022 European Club Championships had been a success story for the Scambio.


From the fund-raising campaign to help us get there to the incredible support of our fans (thank you Arianna, Anna, Alessia, Josè, Donato, Danmeng and Jack!).


From Zampi’s flawless reffing to Giulio M’s stylish impersonation of a competent team manager, the experience is one unlikely to be forgotten in a hurry.


For most, pride was the dominant emotion, though for some, there was a tinge of regret that we didn’t go further.


Giulio C: Sicuramente, in generale, questa opportunità ci ha cresciuto tutti molto, sia dal punto di vista di gioco, dove abbiamo visto situazioni che in Italia neanche si possono immaginare, che dal punto di vista di team, credo sia la prima volta che come squadra passiamo cosi tanto tempo assieme, nel bene e nel male, e questo porta ad avere una consapevolezza migliore dell'idea di team e di rendere ancora di più questa squadra una famiglia, capitanata dal fantomatico fratello maggiore a cui facciamo dannare che può solo che essere il nostro Irish di fiducia, il nostro coach.
Per la questione del piazzamento, sinceramente mi aspettavo molto peggio, ma in effetti, durante i 2 giorni, come già citato prima è cresciuta la consapevolezza, quindi dire che undicesimi è un piazzamento soddisfacente, no, assolutamente no. Avremo potuto fare molto meglio, e se per un colpo di fortuna avessimo avuto un girone un pò più semplice, credo che saremo già tra le prime 10.
Chiara C: Sono assolutamente orgogliosa, è stata una grande possibilità che ci è stata concessa, ma di certo non regalata. Ce lo siamo meritati, sia per quanto riguarda l'aspetto sportivo che l'impegno a livello "sociale". Chi lo avrebbe mai detto, mesi fa, che saremmo stati in grado di raccogliere i 5000€ e partire? Io, per quanto ci sperassi, avevo le mie preoccupazioni. Invece, grazie alla campagna di raccolta fondi che abbiamo fatto, ci siamo riusciti. Sicuramente è stata una grande occasione per toccare con mano cosa voglia dire giocare con squadre di alto livello, e nonostante questo io non posso che essere soddisfatta di noi. Abbiamo tenuto testa a diverse squadre, addirittura vinto alcune partite. Certo, non siamo perfetti (decisamente no) e abbiamo ancora tante cose su cui lavorare, ma questa esperienza è la prova che se si vuole qualcosa e ci si crede a fondo, gli obiettivi si realizzano
Konish: It's a very humbling experience. I felt a bit lost, like a toddler having to learn everything from scratch.
Taylor: I haven’t been playing with Scambio for long, so I was grateful beyond belief to be asked to join them and to be trusted to represent them on such a big stage. Not to mention the fact that we got there through the generosity of the crowdfunding donors! It was a great experience to play against the best teams in Europe. Especially in our group having two of the top teams in the form of Nottingham Hoods and Six Pack. I think I can speak for everyone when I say we didn’t want to go there and have an easy ride. The reason we were there was to test ourselves against the best. I had a chat with a couple of the Six Pack guys I recognized from playing back in Scotland. I could sense that they were a bit surprised by us, maybe because they had never heard of Scambio and didn’t rate us as a challenge but I walked away with a good sense of pride knowing that we made an impact on them.
I had a feeling from the team on the build up to the tournament that we were there to make up the numbers and we would be lucky to win a game. For me personally, I thought we would have done better than 11th place and if not for a few silly errors and ill-discipline we would have! So there is that underlying disappointment but that being said, I am proud of the team for bouncing back and ending the tournament on a high note.
Shadi: 48 ore passate a cercare di lasciare in campo tutta me stessa e allo stesso tempo assorbire tutti gli input e insegnamenti che un torneo a questo livello ti può lasciare. Devo anche dire che aveva un certo peso pensare che eravamo lì grazie al supporto di amici e parenti che avevano contribuito al crowdfunding. Per me ha significato vivermi il weekend con un senso di responsabilità verso le persone che lo avevano reso possibile in termini materiali, la necessità di ringraziare chi ci ha supportato giocando al meglio delle mie possibilità.
Tiago: Super proud. The only nuance being the two games in which we were less rigorous, less disciplined, and unable to play and to implement our game despite the referee's calls.
Charlie: I am proud of what we achieved. Anyone who says otherwise is being unrealistic. With the team that we had, I believe the result was as good as could have been expected. Moreover, as with the week before, we clearly showed that we are the 2nd best team in Italy …. I am more proud of the team as a whole, including team manager, coach and supporters than anything else. We, as always, showed that we can do anything when we work as a team. From the fund raising to the final ranking, the whole weekend has to be considered as a success.
Shadi again: I think our supporters were one of the highlights of the weekend, bringing all their positive energy and smile to cheer us up in all the ups and lows. We were the luckiest team there for sure.
Dijana: It was a rollercoaster of emotions! I was happy and proud to put my skills up to the test and grateful for also getting a learning opportunity to improve my skills by playing against suck top-notch teams
Clara: È un motivo di orgoglio perché siamo una squadra nuova nell'ambito internazionale
Fede: Allo stato attuale delle cose per me è motivo di orgoglio. é pur sempre la prima partecipazione dello Scambio a questa rassegna e in molti, me compreso, non si aspettavano di raggiungere questa posizione in classifica. Credo sia una posizione che rispecchia la nostra attuale preparazione, fatta di belle partite corali e partite in cui si è persa la lucidità o la determinazione. è quindi uno sprono, un bel punto di partenza su cui lavorare ancora, proprio perchè vi sono dei margini di errori che possono e devono essere limati. Il mio grande rimpianto è quello di non avere giocato al mio 100% dovuto all'influenza. L'idea di non aver potuto dare tutto il mio contributo dopo settimane di allenamenti e piccoli sacrifici mi fa ancora parecchio male.
Filippo: Penso che siamo quello che ci meritiamo, la nostra performance non é sempre stata al TOP e sicuramente si poteva fare meglio. Davanti avevamo tutte squadre che sanno giocare a touch, e da piú o meno anni partecipano a questo torneo. É comunque un buon traguardo quello che abbiamo raggiunto ma bisogna fare meglio.
Carlo: I definitely felt nervous, playing against teams of a competing level I had only seen with my phone on youtube made me unsure about how good of a performance I was going to bring. But with that came also a sense of pride and responsibility to give my 100%, for myself and the team.
There is some regret, I definitely think I could have personally done a better job and for some reason I believe it wouldn't be right if I didn't feel like this. I also leave some room to be proud of course, what we achieved is something that exceeded our expectations. There is a lot we've done in those two days to be cherished.
Suri: Sicuramente mi sono sentita estremamente grata e fortunata di poter partecipare ad un torneo di questo livello e per me è stata complessivamente un'esperienza molto positiva. Per me è ancora una cosa un po' assurda l'essere venuta in Spagna per giocare a touch quando un anno e mezzo fa non pensavo che avrei smesso di fare danza. Sono contenta non solo di essere parte, ma di sentirmi parte della squadra e del supporto che c'è tra di noi.
Rana: È stato senza dubbio eccitante, ma mi ha fatto sentire come un ragazzo alle prime armi. Mi sono reso conto del salto di qualità che siamo costretti a compiere se vogliamo competere oltre un certo livello, che non sia quello italiano. Dunque, mi aspetto una presenza massiccia agli allenamenti dei prossimi mesi da parte di tutti.
Sacrificio, umiltà e presenza devono essere i valori fondamentali per i prossimi mesi. Certe figuracce, causate da errori banali, potevano essere evitate se le persone venissero ad allenamento con più frequenza e umiltà, senza mettere in discussione la voce del coach.

And what of the coach? Asked to sum it all up in one word … well, no prizes for guessing his response.


Disgrace.

(Only joking!)


The coach and management team were as proud as everyone else, but will reserve comment until after the 2022/23 finals, which now begin to loom into focus...



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SPECIAL MENTIONS FOR THE PLAYERS THAT HELPED US QUALIFY IN THR FIRST PLACE THANKS TO THEIR EXPLOITS ON THE PITCH


Jose - More than anyone else, you helped to get us on that podium in June 2022: To then break your leg a month before the Euros is beyond cruel. You would have graced this stage. And you may yet do so. Keep going with your rehab. We need you back!


Jeremy - 3-month honeymoons are against touch regulations, we checked! So you owe us €2 to the fondo fallico, and 2 IT tournaments to qualify you for next summer's finals. ENOUGH TRAVELLING!


Poddy - If you're not coming back to Padova, you could at least do some private-eye work for us in Holland to make sure we have an easier ride against Dutch opposition next year!!


The Scambio team that finished 3rd in the 2021/22 Italian Championship, thus qualifying us for the 2022 European Club Championships


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